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Songs of a sourdough (1907)

Author: Service, Robert W. (Robert William), 1874-1958
Publisher: Toronto : W. Briggs
Year: 1907
Language: English
Call number: AHM-0588
Digitizing sponsor: Ontario Council of University Libraries and Member Libraries
Book contributor: Fisher - University of Toronto
Collection: thomasfisher; toronto; university_of_toronto

Full catalog record: MARCXML

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Internet Archive Canada's 200,000 Digitized Text


was the first publication of author Robert W. Service and became instantly popular when it was published in 1907. There were 10 Canadian printings in that first year of publication, totaling 12,750 copies.

The collection includes “ The Shooting of Dan McGrew” and “ The Cremation of Sam McGee”. Which have become classics taught in literature classes, recited widely, referenced in films and music such as the 1949 song "Dangerous Dan McGrew" by Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians.

Service initially sent the manuscript of Songs of a Sourdough to the Methodist Book and Publishing House in Toronto to be published at his own expense. The book subsequently came to the attention of editors in the office, and a commercial edition was ordered. The first, “Author's Edition” was 500 copies, but with so many orders even before the date of publication, a second edition of 750 was immediately printed.

This first edition copy, contributed by The Thomas Fisher Library is an excellent example of Canadiana, detailing the landscapes of the Northwest and memorable characters involved with the Gold Rush in the Yukon Territory.

RBSC copy: In original green cloth


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